Why Does the CCP Require Real-Name Registration for Internet and Telephone Users?

Zhen Yan

Following the implementation of the Cybersecurity Law in mainland China on June 1, the 24th article of which stipulates that network operators must require users to register using their real identity information and, if they refuse to provide it, must not provide them with relevant services, China will fully impose real-identity system on mobile phones. According to the Chinese government, 92 percent of China’s telephone users had been registered under real names by May 2016. Now telecommunications companies are required to make sure that all telephone services will have had real-name registration by June 30, 2017.

Is it good or bad news for people in mainland China? The emergence of the Internet and development of the telecommunications have indeed brought many benefits to our work and lives and broaden our knowledge and understanding of the outside world. However, people in mainland China have never enjoyed Internet freedom due to constant website blockages of the Chinese Communist Party’s cyberpolice. Overseas information cannot come in freely and the truth of major domestic incidents cannot be sent out; people’s posts on social media platforms are often deleted by the authorities, and their calls are also kept under surveillance. Outwardly, the Chinese Communist Party professed that the new cybersecurity law was meant for protecting the legal rights of citizens and upholding national security and society’s public interest. Yet in reality it has been restricting the usage of Internet and telecommunications and monitoring all the Internet and telephone users in mainland China. For example, in the spring of 2011, a group of strange men burst into a Christian’s home and directly took her to the local police station. During the interrogation, she learned that she was arrested because she had called a sister in the church talking about transporting the spiritual books, which attracted the notice of the police from the State Security Bureau during surveillance and led to the apprehension of the several sisters involved in the transport and the shutdown of the printing plant. As another example, after Chinese President Xi Jinping announced a new policy on news media control that all Chinese media had to serve the party in a visit to three state media organizations on Feb. 19, Ren Zhiqiang, an ex-president of Beijing Huayuan Group, a property company, posted statements challenging this policy and saying that the news media should serve the people, not the party. The posts of this outspoken property tycoon were quickly deleted. On Feb. 22, a website managed by the Beijing municipal party committee criticized Mr. Ren, saying that he was acting against the party.

Obviously, the Chinese Communist Party aims to thoroughly limit freedom of speech by fully carrying out real-identity registration of Internet and telephone users. It has always employed the strategy of “Submit to me or perish,” giving no punishment to those obedient people who specially sing praise for it and are at its beck and call, while thinking of every possible way to crack down on those who have discernment of it and dare to speak the truth as well as the Christians. If the latter want to tell the truth, they will be silenced unceremoniously by the party, and any further insistence will make them lose their lives. Wasn’t Zhang Zhixin impaled in the throat and shot for opposing Mao Zedong’s tyranny during the Cultural Revolution? To take another example: In the summer of 2011, a Christian in Xi’an City received a call from her daughter in Yunnan Province, who told her that many Christians had been arrested by the Chinese Communist Party in Kunming City and tried to persuade her out of her belief in God for it would put her at risk of being arrested. Less than an hour after that, the police officers from the local police station came to her, questioning whether she believed in God and repeatedly warning her not to do that. Only then did she realize that the Chinese Communist Party had been wiretapping. … From the facts above, we can see that the Chinese Communist Party has been monitoring people by the Internet and telecommunications. The purpose of real-name registration of all Internet and telephone users required by the party is to gain complete control over the Chinese people and to have them obey it and support it.

Now the Chinese Communist government has developed authenticated identity administration for Internet and telephone users, and every word of the mainland Chinese is monitored and mastered by the party. Once one is found suspected, he will be tracked and located wherever he goes. In this way, the Chinese Communist Party’s aim of controlling people is achieved, while the Chinese people have completely lost their freedom. No one can be brave enough to speak the truth, much less do something against the party’s will. So, the Chinese Communist Party’s rule of real-name registration for all Internet and telephone users undoubtedly shackles the Chinese people. How miserable the mainland Chinese!

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